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Sunday, October 25 2015 21:14

Holiday Wish Guide: SKY VIPER V950HD Video Drone

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Much talked-about, curious, and even "controversial," Drones are some of the hottest items for the 2015 Holiday Season. Whether you consider the consumer grade to be Quadcopters, Drones, or simply radio-controlled toys, there's a lot of fun to be had in this category, and the folks at Skyrocket Toys are leading the charge with their Sky Viper Drones. The latest series was announced in the spring and is hitting stores right now, with the v950HD Video Drone topping the "must have" lists this season, and securing a spot in my own 2015 Holiday Wish Guide here at THE ROCK FATHER Magazine. What makes this Drone worth checking out? Check out some hands-on video below, along with my full review...

Priced at under $100, this quad is remarkably easy to fly, and compared to most of the different copters we've tried, has almost no learning curve. It has great balance, and as long as the wind doesn't get in the way, it's really easy to control. Based on skill level, there's three settings that will affect the flight sensitivity.

There's removable corner bumpers (great for protecting the blades indoors), and there's one-touch barrel roll stunts that can be achieved with the camera detached. As with all radio controlled flying machines such as this, you'll want to be fully-charged, and be aware that flight time is about 10-15 minutes on a full charge. Those stunts (starting at about 1:06 in my video) are crowd-pleasers, and I don't think there's another Drone on the market right now that can pull those off.

We've had our Drone for about two months now, and it's definitely durable. It's taken some heavy hits on grass, concrete, trees, and fences - and we haven't even had to change the blades yet (it comes with a replacement kit, just in-case). The one point where the Video Drone could use improvement is actually right there in the name - the video aspect - but that's not a huge deal, which I will explain.

If the video aspect is the true selling point for you, you might want to look further. You have to remember that this is a $100 toy, and a fun one! But if you want professional-level video, you're probably looking at about a $1,500 unit with a gimbal on the bottom that you can attach a GoPro to. This is not on that level. The 720p HD capability might be overstated, as it tends to be wavy, a bit washed-out, and somewhat choppy on takeoff and landing. This is apparent in my video above, and you can find dozens of videos from other v950HD owners on YouTube that display similar results. Again, as a toy - still ok.

The true joy of this unit is just how easy to fly and durable it is. The kids love watching it, and I love flying it. The video is really just a bonus, and this sorta-filmmaking writer who once was a kid that thought the Fisher-Price PXL-2000 was the greatest thing ever (in 1987) could totally see this as tool to help inspire a new generation in a similar manner.

The Sky Viper v950HD Video Drone is available now from Amazon and other retailers Nationwide.

For more Great Gift Ideas, check out THE ROCK FATHER's 2015 Holiday Wish Guide.
Looking for 2015's Best New Release Holiday Music & Movies? Check this out!
James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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